The Eyes of The Beholders (Book #13)

by A. C. Crispin


The Enterprise is ordered to an area of space that several Starships from various cultures, including Earth have been reported missing. On arrival, the Enterprise is caught in the same trap, held fast by a force that has captured over 100 ships.
When the away team beam across to the Starship Marco Polo, they find most of the crew dead, seemingly killed by each other in fits of madness. Taking the survivors back to the Enterprise, the crew soon find themselves beginning to suffer symptoms of insanity themselves; reliving past dreams and nightmares. Troi, unable to cope with the madness is forced into a coma by Doctor Crusher.
On further study, Riker and Data beams right into the heart of the entity, but fall unconscious as he fights against the visions. Only Deanna's link pulls Will through. But the away teams visit establishes that the entity is in fact a monument to a dying race called the Ylan's, and the beam holding the ships to ransom was indeed simply an invitation to view. After Data is reprogrammed to cope with the effects of the entity, he returns and manages to disable the force-field, releasing the Enterprise.

Notable Imzadi moments:

Page 85 to 86
Troi concentrated, eyes closed. "I can feel them," she said in a low voice. Suddenly she put a hand to her head, moaned, then swayed in her seat.
"Counselor!" Picard said sharply, but she did not answer.
With a sudden leap, Riker was by Troi's side, bending over her. "Deanna!" he cried, touching her shoulder gently. "Are you all right?"
Blindly she put out a shaking hand, and the first officer caught it, gripped it tightly. His grasp seemed to steady her, but still the half-Betazoid woman shuddered all over, as though some fever was gnawing at her bones. "Captain....," she began in a hoarse whisper... "They're dying over there...oh, God...we must save them..."
She swayed again, then crumpled out of her seat in a dead faint.
Will Riker caught her before she could hit the floor of the bridge. The tall officer scooped up her slight form as easily as he would a child. Her long black hair streamed down over his arm like a river of ebony as he straightened up.
Picard raised his voice to address the intercom. "Bridge to sickbay. We need medics up here on the double!"
A voice he did not recognize replied, "Yes, sir!"
Riker walked up the curving ramp and waited near the turbolift doors. Seconds later, they opened, and two people, one of whom carried an antigravity stretcher, bolted out. "She passed out," Riker said as they carefully eased the counselor's limp form onto the stretcher.
One of the medical personnel passed a scanner over the unconscious Troi, then nodded briskly. "She just fainted, sir. She should be fine."
Riker made a quick involuntary movement as if to follow them as they carried the counselor into the turbolift, but he stood his ground. His blue-gray eyes were shadowed with anxiety as he came back down the ramp, but his step was determined.
Page 161
On his way to the transporter room to join his away tea,. Will had stopped off in sickbay. For a moment he'd stood gazing down at the counselor's lovely, unconscious features, framed by those masses of glossy black curls. Sleeping Beauty, he thought, and had to swallow against the sudden tightness in his throat. The sight of Troi asleep awakened a surge of memories and feelings that he'd thought long buried.
Taking her limp hand in his, Riker directed a thought at her, hoping somehow that it would reach beyond the drug-induced sleep. Hang on, Deanna. We're going to get out of this, I promise you, darling. Just hang on...
Page 184 to 186
Will...Someone's voice echoed down the recesses of his mind. Will Riker...
The voice (or was it a thought? he could not be sure...) seemed familiar. But the monsters, some of them, had been clever. One of them could be trying to lure him out of safety with a ruse.
Riker did not respond. Go away, he thought, with as much of his reasoning mind as was available to him here.
Time passed...he had no idea how much. He began to relax again.
Then, abruptly, it was there again, and much closer! Will! It's Deanna. Where are you? You must come out, it's safe now.
Deanna? He had known a Deanna once. They had been lovers for a time, then, more recently, friends. He could trust Deanna...he'd always trusted Deanna...
But perhaps it was a monster, trying to lure him out.
He stayed hidden.
Will! The summons was almost in his hiding place now! Will, come out. You're safe now, come out. Contacting you is extremely difficult for me. Will, if I stay here much longer, I could lose myself! Will, Imzadi, I need you, you must trust me!
Only Deanna called him Imzadi. No one else could know that secret endearment. That, and her pleading "I need you!" reached him as nothing else could have.
Deanna? he thought, moving a bit toward the presence in his mind. Deanna, is it really you?
Her response was filled with wild joy and relief. Yes, Will, it's really me! Oh, God, I'm so glad I found you! Come with me!
But there are monsters there,
he said, childlike in his simplicity.
Not when we're together, there aren't, was her response. When we're together, we're safe and happy, right?
he admitted.
Will, it's dangerous for us to stay here, she said, Especially for me. If you don't want me to be hurt, you must come now!
He didn't want Deanna to be hurt. He loved Deanna, he would always love Deanna, though that love had changed throughout the years, to the love of a dear and true friend rather than the romantic flame it had been in the beginning. There was no way he could let her be hurt because of him.


Thank you Carol for putting this together =)